SAN DIEGO - The Lady Vaqueros don’t have to search far for motivation this week.
They need only look back at their postseason record from the last two years.
Between 2009 and 2010, San Diego has lost each series they’ve been a part of. Moreover, Riviera - their first-round opponent - handed San Diego one of its seven losses this season.
“We’re going to get after it this week,” San Diego coach Rey Ramirez said. “We finished the season and we were able to rest our starters and get some time off, but we’re hitting it hard this season. We want to win this series.”
San Diego and Riviera are meeting in Sinton Friday and Saturday for a best-of-three series in the Class 2A state softball playoffs. Game 1 of the series is at 7 p.m. Friday. Game 2 is set for noon Saturday. If needed, Game 3 will follow 45 minutes after the conclusion of Game 2.
After a solid season in which San Diego was third in District 31-2A, the last thing Ramirez wants is another early postseason exit.
“We’re playing well and we have a good team,” he said. “You never know what can happen in the playoffs, but we’re playing a three-game series like we wanted and I think that benefits us. Over a three-game series, the best team is usually going to win.”
The Lady Vaqueros are 11-3 in district and 25-7 for the season. They completed the season by outscoring their opposition, 254-102.
They scored an average of some eight runs a game while allowing three. San Diego closed its regular season by beating Freer, 16-2; Skidmore-Tynan, 15-5; and Taft, 9-4.
San Diego also had stellar individual statistics. Freshman ace pitcher Gabby Gonzalez was 17-3 for the season and 8-3 in district. Back-up pitcher Sirena Martinez filled in through the Lady Vaqueros’ last three games and collected three-straight wins.
Offensively, senior Celena Samaniego was a constant clutch-hitter. She finished the regular season with a .592 batting average and four home runs. Sydney Ramirez topped the team in batting with an average of .622. Laura Trevino has a season-long average of .596. Martinez is also among San Diego’s top hitter with an average of .498.
The Lady Vaqueros know their first-round opponent well. Riviera was the runner-up in District 32-2A. In the one game they played this season, the Lady Seahawks beat the Lady Vaqueros, 7-5, in the championship game of the San Diego Booster Club softball tournament.
Riviera and Hebbronville were tied for second in 32-2A, but Riviera claimed second by winning a district playoff game.